Fort Myers, Florida
Some call it downtown Fort Myers. Others know it as the historic River District or the City of Palms (drive down McGregor Boulevard and you'll know why). Whatever its name, since Thomas Edison and Henry Ford established their winter estates here, this Southern influenced town has grown into a city with attractions and atmosphere worthy of a bigger city's envy. Fort Myers forms the core of a city that stretches for miles south along the Caloosahatchee River and east to the rural interior. Named for a Civil War-era army colonel, Fort Myers' history parallels that of Florida itself.
Today, Fort Myers is a bustling metropolis with ecological, historical and cultural attractions, as well as shopping across the spectrum – high-end outlets, antiques, boutiques and outdoor malls. Dining and nightlife entertain when the sun goes down over the Caloosahatchee.
Arts and Entertainment
Fort Myers is popular for its beaches, fishing, shopping – and the opportunity to learn about two of the nation’s most famed inventors and business leaders. You and your family can experience one-on-one natural encounters, play on top-notch beaches and treat yourselves to endless family-friendly attractions, restaurants and resorts in Fort Myers and surrounding areas along southwest Florida’s sunny Gulf Coast. And don’t miss the Thomas Edison and Henry Ford winter estates. Back in 1916, Ford bought land in downtown Fort Myers, next door to Edison, his mentor. Now, both estates serve as museums that honor their founders and remind all of us about what they overcame and what they accomplished.
A renovation of the city's downtown waterfront promises new attractions, shopping, local artists and dining venues in the upscale, walkable Fort Myers River District.
Yearly events include the Edison Festival of Lights, Caloosahatchee Celtic Festival, Zombicon, Movies in the Park, Holiday Events and many more! Vast tracks of land have been set-aside as park and preserve space. Darling National Wildlife Refuge on Sanibel, biois one of the largest mangrove wildernesses in the country. Six Mile Cypress Slough Preserve and Caloosahatchee Regional Park offer a variety of terrain to explore.
Fort Myers public schools are operated by Lee County Public Schools. Lee County Public Schools is the ninth-largest district in Florida and the 33rd-largest school district in the United States. They educate more than 85,000 students in grades K-12. The District is a model for others in the state and nation - from our Microsoft Certified High School (Dunbar High) to their National Blue Ribbon School of Excellence (The Sanibel School) to one of the top IB High Schools in the world (Fort Myers High.) There are also many private schools from which to choose.
Florida Gulf Coast University is located in Fort Myers as are Edison State College, Rasmussen College and Southwest Florida College.